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Labor Attorney: Osha Equipped To Leverage Many Compliance, Enforcement Tools

Under Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration will increase workplace and jobsite inspections, targeting high incident rate industries and employers

Sources: CP staff

Under Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration will increase workplace and jobsite inspections, targeting high incident rate industries and employers. In OSHA and the New Administration, a seminar at National Precast Concrete Association's 2010 Precast Show, attorney Isaac Hernandez of Phoenix-based Ballard Spahr LLP, told producers:

Ô President Obama's FY2011 budget indicates a year-over-year 4.5 percent increase to add OSHA enforcement staff, and a slight decrease for employer compliance assistance.

Ô Employers should be prepared to respond to OSHA investigators taking a more aggressive stance on conducting confidential interviews with supervisors. Employers are well within their rights to indicate that supervisors are agents of the company and entitled to have company counsel present during interviews. Interviews with non-supervisory employees should also be conducted with the employee's voluntary consent.

Ô Under Sec. Solis, OSHA will be increasing attention on industries with high immigrant-labor factors and federal contractors.

Ô Organized labor continues to focus on OSHA workplace and jobsite guidelines, and infiltrating nonunion contractors to report safety and health violations. Unions are also aligning with community-based organizations to monitor employersÌ OSHA compliance.

Ô OSHA is processing more workplace and jobsite accident data due to a greater exchange of information with workersÌ comp agencies and fire service/EMT departments.